Rod Liddle

Real football fans don’t care about race

21 July 2018

9:00 AM

21 July 2018

9:00 AM

It’s middle-class commentators – not supporters – who seem obsessed with the number of black players

There were altogether too many darkies in England’s World Cup Squad for me to take any pleasure in their moderate achievements out in Russia. They did not represent me. I learned this via the Guardian in an article by a man called Steve Bloomfield who insisted that the team represented only the 48 per cent of Britons who voted Remain, because there were too many ‘players of colour’ in the side for the likes of us gammon-faced scumbag racist Leavers. Also, they were young. Apparently we ‘don’t usually like’ these kinds of people. Steve had been through the squad and painstakingly counted how many of them looked a bit on the darkish side, and came to the conclusion that there were 11. I don’t know where he put Kieran Trippier: I suggest you ring him up and ask him.

This kind of bile-filled, deranged obsessiveness entertains me no end. Steve clearly doesn’t go to football matches or he would know that black players are a not entirely uncommon phenomenon these past 30 or so years. And always cheered onward by predominantly working-class football fans who voted overwhelmingly for Leave. There were black players at my club, Millwall, long before the Guardian decided it might be expedient to employ one or two writers ‘of colour’ for its rapidly diminishing audience. And the black fans in the ground worked alongside the whites in the plastering trade, or as electricians or plumbers: they were not, in the main, on the Guardian’s editorial board or BBC producers. The people who voted Leave were integrated long before middle-class tossers like Bloomfield.

But he is not alone, bless him. As the sociologist Frank Furedi pointed out on Spiked Online, the middle-class white left commentators spent the entire tournament counting black faces among the teams. Not watching the game, just doing a kind of weird KKK census. Sweden and Russia were castigated for being monocultural (or, more properly, monoracial). But no such insults were flung by these mentals at Nigeria, Senegal, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Panama, Egypt, Mexico, Morocco: just those with too many whites. The all-white teams would fail and exit the tournament early, one idiotic American columnist averred, which will have come as a surprise to the Croatians, the Russians and the Swedes, who did kind of OK.

Everything that happens in the world must be shoe-horned into the stunted manifestos of these monomaniacs. I remember Alastair Campbell talking about watching Leicester City play a home game. This was during the Foxes’ bizarre and magnificent assault on the Premier League title, occasioned by a thrilling cut-and-thrust counter-attacking game. But Alastair wasn’t watching Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy ripping the opposition to threads — his face was turned towards the home support and he was counting the BAME faces. He professed himself delighted. Yes, it’s Leicester, you moron, with a majority Asian population. Why would Asian people not wish to celebrate the triumph of their hometown club? Only a racist would be surprised. A white, self-flagellating racist.

If you are part of the liberal left, the real problem is that there are all too many people to hate and despise, quite apart from the 52 per cent of the population who voted to leave the EU. There’s also Christopher Chope, MP. Chope is a Conservative. He is in trouble with the Guardian this week for having blocked the use of the House of Commons chamber for a ‘Women MPs of the World’ conference in the autumn. Chope’s objection was simply to ensure that all attendees would actually be elected representatives, although I could add one or two others. Such as how would it be if the House of Commons hosted a men-only event, or a white-only event? And aren’t they satisfied with Radio 4?

Anyway, the Grauniad castigated the man as an antediluvian sexist. He had form, they suggested. It’s only a couple of weeks since the woman-hating Chope blocked a private member’s bill to introduce a new law against upskirting. This is when you view a lady’s private parts with the use of |a phone on a selfie stick. I have never done it. But then I live in the north-east of England, where you really don’t need any surreptitious equipment to get the job done — it’s all there on display, winter or summer. The same is true of Leeds, Sheffield, Bolton, Carlisle and Sunderland, incidentally.

Chope’s objection was largely procedural. He does not agree with fatuous new legislation being passed without the members of the House of Commons debating and analysing the pros and cons. That might lead to bad laws. And yet for this Chope was vilified by his fellow parliamentarians who howled ‘shame’ at him and moaned that Theresa May should kick him out of the party. Meanwhile, he had empty-headed social justice warriors leaving pairs of knickers at his front door. His wife, for a time, was scared to leave the home.

Chope actually agreed that legislation was needed to combat this new thing we have, upskirting. The bill has now been properly debated and will return to the House ready to be passed in a kind of cogent form. But the hatred, the opprobrium, the insults were truly something to behold. They seem perpetually beside themselves with rage, these identitarians who are right about everything.

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